What Was Created and Built in 2018?
Armenian Chamber of Architects Established
Mkrtich Minasyan, the Chairman of the Chamber of Architects of the Republic of Armenia: It was a long-awaited event that finally became a reality. Our Chamber is a self-governing body, we have our own laws, which will henceforth protect the activities of architects, determine the norms of architectural ethics. Unpleasant situations, that used to prevail in the relationship between the architects and the developers, will be excluded, like situations, when the developers dictate their tastes and wishes to architects, and in the course of the construction works the entire idea of the architect is being violated. Often the architects used to disclaim their own projects, because they did not want their names to be associated with the ugly buildings, distorting their initial idea. From now on, the license on architectural activity will be issued by qualified commissions, consisting of specialists. About 50 licenses are already prepared and soon will be solemnly provided.
Grigor Azizyan, the Director of Armproject company: From now on, the Armenian Chamber of Architects will unite architects and civil-engineers. We will hand activity licenses taking into account their experience and completed projects. We have to be consistent and not repeat the same mistakes as was done by Licensing Committee.
The Tasks on Protection of Cultural and Historical Monuments Are Revised
Sirekan Ohanyan, the Director of Yerevanproject company: The year 2018 was special, because our country started to discuss the issue of inclusion of the Historical and Cultural Monuments Protection Agency (within the Ministry of Culture) into the structure of Urban Planning Committee. Immovable monuments are urban units, and the tasks of their protection, operation, restoration and reconstruction are elements of urban planning activities. It is the architects and urban planners represented by the Urban Planning Committee who are called upon to work on the restoration and preservation of the cultural and historical environment.
Mkrtich Minasyan: In 2018, seven buildings were included in the list of immovable historical and cultural monuments (the old building of Zvartnots airport, Russia cinema, the summer hall of Moscow cinema, Hrazdan stadium, underground stations Republic Square and Yeritasardakan, Cafesjian Center for The Arts). We have long fought for it and finally the decision was made. So far, we have not begun the work on strengthening and restoration of these monuments, but an important step was taken, and, I hope, it will be continued.
Micro-regional Urban Planning Documents Were Prepared for Syunik and Ararat Provinces
Grigor Azizyan: I would highlight the development of micro-regional urban planning documents as major work carried out in 2018. In 2017 we completed the work for Tavush province, most of Syunik and Ararat provinces. The rest was done by other companies. This work will be continued. Master plans of rural settlements are created with emphasis on their economic relations, further development opportunities and the places where you can implement these or other investment projects.
Sirekan Ohanyan: One of the major projects in 2018 was a micro-regional design of 30 settlements in Masis region of Ararat province ordered by the Urban Planning Committee. With the help of these documents we identify the opportunities for our villages, the prospects for their development, outline and evaluate new areas and chances in terms of investment.
What Was Built ?
Sirekan Ohanyan: In the beginning of 2018 we have completed the work begun in the previous year on the project for improvement and landscaping of Jermuk town. The project covers the improvement of neighborhoods, streets, sidewalks, roof repair of 24 houses, modernization of the frontal part of the houses on Shahumyan street, reconstruction of the city park, etc. The construction work continues in accordance with the project.
The construction of an educational and sports complex in Avan is almost completed, only landscaping left to be done. The complex will include figure skating sports school, fitness center, school and kindergarden.
In 2018 two parks have been landscaped: 1) the park in the area between Mashtots Avenue and Saryan Street, 2) the park in Komitas pantheon In the park adjacent to Mashtots Avenue, a “dry” or pedestrian fountain with color-sound design was built.
Mkrtich Minasyan: In 2018 two large projects were put into operation: 1) the medical center in Vanadzor and 2) the Business Center Kamar on Shahumyan Square in Yerevan. We have a great architectural potential, which will be more productive with the help of the Chamber.
Grigor Azizyan: In 2018 Armproject carried out the project for the construction of the Yerevan branch of Kempinski Hotels chain. The hotel is being built on Charles Aznavour square next to Stanislavsky Russian Drama Theater. Another major project is also associated with a well-known hotel brand: on the area adjacent to Republic street, next to Erebuni Business Center, a Park Inn hotel is being built.
Revolutionary 2018 was a turning point in the political life of Armenia. Hopefully 2019 will bring many opportunities for construction industry new investments and projects.